Was Hate Involved In the Attack On Jewish Sophomore At MSU?
Zachary Tennen told his parents and police that two men with shaved heads broke his jaw at an off-campus party early Sunday morning.
The assailants asked whether he was Jewish, according to his mother and father, Tina and Bruce Tennen, then raised their arms in a Nazi salute, chanted “Heil Hitler” and knocked him to the ground.
They then “stapled me in the back side of my bottom teeth, starting in my gums and going upwards,” his father said, reading from Zachary’s statement to East Lansing Police.
Police, however, have a different story, according to the Lansing State Journal.
East Lansing police say the incident is “likely not a hate crime.” The two witnesses they’ve spoken to told the story differently.
According to East Lansing police Capt. Jeff Murphy, the witnesses said Zachary Tennen got into a confrontation with two men in front of the house on the 500 block of Spartan Avenue. Most of the guests were hanging out in back.
“The witnesses said one of the people, being the suspect, punched the victim in the face, the victim went down and the suspects left the area,” Murphy told the paper.
The witnesses told police that they went over to see if Tennen was OK, got cold vegetables to put on his face, and got him into a cab so he could get to the hospital, Murphy said. The Nazi salutes or the shouts of “Heil Hilter” weren’t part of their version of events.